Vam Ho bird sanctuary is located in a zone belonged to two communes: My Hoa Commune and Tan Xuyen Commune, Ba Tri District, Ben Tre Province. It is 52 kilometers apart from Ben Tre Town and 120 kilometers (by road) or 100 kilometers (by river) from Ho Chi Minh city.
Vam Ho is a submerged region where there are many wild plants grow and create a forest. It is also a residence to thousands of storks, black-crowned night herons and many other bird species.
(Vam Ho is a home to many wild birds)
The bird population in Vam Ho bird sanctuary includes 84 species belonging to 35 families and 12 orders. There are 2,000 visitors in average coming to Vam Ho each year. Especially, the bird sanctuary is always crowded during the time the birds migrate here and reproduce (from April to October according to the lunar calendar)
Vam Ho is a submerged region where there are wild plants gather and grow and form a forest. On the higher floor of the forest, there are coconut trees (there are much more before and even this region used to be called as “Leaves Islets” as well), date palms, mangroves, gray mangroves, which is really ideal for birds to live. At the lower forest floor, Japanese thistles, common derrises, common reeds and so on are the vegetation for storks and black-crowned night herons nesting and reproducing. The Vam Ho bird sanctuary is still young comparing to other bird sanctuaries in the Mekong Delta region. It was only formed from 5/1986 when birds started to fly here. Those birds were from Dat Islet, An Hiep village, Ba Tri District and migrated here.
Every day, around 4 or 5 o’clock in the afternoon, there are usualsly many tiny dots moving in the west. Those dots become clearer and after a few minutes, you will see flocks of thousands storks flapping their wings and flying through Ba Lai River, gilding in the soft diffused light of the sunset and slightly landing on the green forest carpet. When the birds are home, the whole forest become vivid because of the sound of the young hungry birds mixed with the loud sound of the frustrating storks.
(Many birds have migrated and dwelled here)
When the sky is darker, the storks are home but the sanctuary bustles again because the black-crowned night herons start looking for food. Even the storks and the black-crowned night herons live together in the same forest, they take turn to keep their “house”. When the storks stay, the black-crowned night herons leave and when the black-crowned night herons are back, the storks continue their journey groping for food near the river bank. The staff at the Vam Ho resort’s restaurant said that on the moon day, those black-crowned night herons widen their wings in the shimmering moonlight is the most beautiful moment. It is fanciful but also taciturn as well.
(A close-up photos of one valuable kind of birds in the Vam Ho sanctuary)
In Vam Ho, besides the spectacular dance and song of the storks and the black-crowned night herons, the great symphony is also featured with other wild birds’ sounds associated with the rustling sound of the leaves, for example: the flock call of the watercocks in the silent midsummer’s night, the sound of coucals, ducks in the afternoon and many other smaller birds lived in the bushes near water surface like waterhens, sparrows, kingfishers, red-vented bulbul, black drongo and so forth.
When it is raining and thundering, all the birds will fly to the sky and cover a large part of the sky. There are approximately 500,000 birds and the stork seize a large number with white stork, royal spoonbill, black head ibis, grey heron and so on.
(Various kinds of birds fly here to nest annually)
During the breeding season, there are many bird’s nests hanging on the trees, on the top of the trees and the branches as well.
, visit the resistance base, try passing the “monkey bridge”, rest on the swaying hammocks under the forest leaves and breathe the fresh air of Ba Lai river.
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